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Excluding Steam apps from CrashPlan backup on Mac OS X

I’m not much of a gamer, but having “purchased” Portal for free years ago, I finally installed Steam on my Mac so that I could (perhaps) try it out.

When considering making another download, though, I began to wonder where Steam applications “live” on the filesystem. Though I had hoped that they were installed to some system-wide location (which of course wouldn’t be great in a multi-user environment), an answer on Super User informed me that apps are stored within one’s own Library, under ~/Library/Application Support/Steam/SteamApps.

While this it not itself a problem, it does mean that my downloaded Steam applications were being backed up by CrashPlan. Backups are good, but I personally don’t care enough about Steam apps to include them in my backup data set. Fortunately, CrashPlan makes it easy to exclude certain directories from backup.

First, find the Files area in the CrashPlan application. Typically this specifies your home directory. Then click the Change… button. In the resulting directory tree dialog, navigate to ~/Library/Application Support/Steam and uncheck SteamApps:

Click the Save button, and that’s it! CrashPlan will “synchronize” with your backup destinations, and you should see the size of your backup decrease.